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HELP! Getting 11month old to sleep

(2 Posts)
dldl Sun 23-Sep-12 19:18:51


Hoping I could reach out to fellow mumsnetters for some help and advice. DS is nearly 11 months old and nights have started to prove problematic. He was a great sleeper at night when he was little, then had chicken pox and got into habit of waking up at night so we used controlled crying and he started sleeping through again, and then had periods of early waking at 5am which just resolved over time (can't remember exactly how as too tired). A few good months and now our issue is that he will not fall asleep without sucking something and he is waking up once or twice in the night - not consistently but enough nights of the wake to make DH and I not function properly!

DS was always breastfed and did used to fall asleep feeding but always woke for a second or two on transfer when he was little. I am still feeding morning and night. During the day he eats 3 very very good meals (no issues there!) and has 1 bottle, occasionally 2.

His daily routine is wake up anytime from 6 - 6:30. Feed. Breakfast 7:30 - 7:45, bottle 10am, lunch 11:45am, sleep 12:30 - 13:30 or sometimes 14:00 on a rare occasion, a big tea (more like supper) at 16:00 and then a snack at 18:00, followed by bath, story, feed, and bed.

Daytime sleeping was always an issue from day 1 - either fell asleep in the buggy or feeding or was difficult to get to sleep. It remains an issue and either he needs to be patted for 5 mins and then falls asleep, or it goes on longer than 5 mins and you know it's not going to happen, or he just falls asleep mid-playing! So two extremes!

Nighttime sleeping is now causing issues - he always falls asleep at the feed before bed. It didn't used to bother me and I'd just transfer him. He slept through and that was that. However the last couple of weeks he has woken up in the night and I've suddenly realised that he is very dependant on sucking (either breast or bottle) to get to sleep.

We have tried letting him cry when he wakes up in the middle of the night to see what happens with varied success. One time he just went back to sleep after 6 minutes. Various other times I have just buckled due to tiredness and fed him. Last night we decided enough was enough so we let him cry going into his room regularly and eventually just staying in his room! After an hour he got himself to sleep - eek! Neighbours are probably not amused!

Tonight I thought that maybe I should put him to bed making sure that he got himself to sleep without sucking and then if he wakes in the night maybe he won't feel the desperate need to suck. So...bath, pyjamas, story, bottle (thought it'd be easier than breast), and transfer to cot. 20 mins of screaming,and me singing patting etc etc, and no luck at all. I decided to just put a teat in his mouth (don't own a dummy so an improvisation). Used a different teat to the ones he has on his bottles, and DS was fast asleep in 3 seconds.

AAAAGH! Is my answer that he just needs a dummy to go to sleep despite have survived without it for 11 months (or rather having just had a human dummy), or do you have suggestions as to how to train him or wean him off the sucking-sleep association.

Really that some of you had the patience to read a very tired mother's lengthy waffle and that you will have some advice and suggestions.

Thank you so much.


dldl Sun 23-Sep-12 21:22:08

Thought I'd try turn in early for the night and have a quick look before I responses yet sad.

Bumping it!

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